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31 March 2009

Revel in Indulgence Deli Cafe

DSC099920Indulgence Deli Cafe sits along the busy skyscrapers and corporate people in Perea St in Makati City. But even if this is the case, Indulgence isn't a fast food joint, where you can dine and dash within 5 minutes.

This place gives you a taste of home with its homemade pastas, pizzas and meals. If you're on the sweet side, their cakes and pastries would be very yummy. Oh, don't forget to try their brewed coffee. Coming from a family of die-hard-coffee drinkers, I must say that their coffee is one of the best I have tasted in a long time.


What I loved during my visit was their Mushroom Medley (Php 145). Combining three different kinds of mushrooms with lots of onions, tomatoes and garlic is to-die-for in my book. Don't be fooled by this simple dish, because it's really delicious.
I heard that their other pastas, like the Indulgence Deli Pasta, the pesto and others are also great.

On to the desserts - what I enjoyed the most was the Brownie Cheesecake. New York style cheesecake with lots of brownies and chocolate frosting on top. It's not too sweet, nor too rich, so you would love to take bite after bite of this satisfying goodness.

If you're a chocolate lover, you should try their "Death by Chocolate" which is made up of layers upon layers of different chocolates.

If you're not into cakes, I would suggest that you try the owner Mrs. Bhagwani’s homemade pili yema. You won't notice you already popped the whole lot in your mouth.

Indulgence Deli Cafe is open for breakfast at 7:30 a.m up to 10 p.m during weekdays only. It comfortably sits 25 people inside and another 20 al fresco.


Review and Photos by Bong.

26 March 2009

Restaurant Review | Manos Greek Taverna

Manos Greek Taverna
Type of Cuisine: Greek
Average cost per person: Php 250-380 (US$5.00-US$8.00)
Overall Rating: starstarstarstarnostar

Months ago, plurkers and bloggers led by Manolo and others trooped to Tagaytay City to sample flavorful food treats from different restaurants and enjoy each others' company. For most people going to Tagaytay, one of the more popular stops there would be Leslie's Restaurant. Fortunately, when we went to Tagaytay with other bloggers, it wasn't our first stop, instead, it was our last; instead, we tried Mano's Greek Taverna for lunch.

Mano's Greek Taverna struck us as a sort of hole-in-the-wall restaurant, although we were told that it is both well known and well visited by quite a following. The food's good and the place, just right. We ordered quite a lot, but here are some of their dishes that we liked.

122620082848This Greek Salad's cheese is so good, and so fresh. You have to love this home-made delight. It's very fresh looking and pleasing to the eyes. The combination's just honest, simple and perfect.

DSC014610 Saganaki is a dish of shrimp with feta, tomatoes, oregano and other spices. We liked the combination of the shrimp and tomatoes. It's yummy but it's nothing special for us.

DSC014810Mousaka (Php 220, US$ 4.58)
Sharing the mousaka among four people was definitely a good idea. For Tiffy, eating the mousaka was kind of like eating a whole lot of mashed potatoes. But for Bong, it was really a great dish. Although you gotta admit -- the first bite was YUM!

122620082862Grilled Lamb Shoulder (Php 450, US$ 9.36)
This order was super worth it. Not only did it have a generous serving, it also came with this unusually crunchy fries. For Tiffy, lamb is always something to celebrate!

DSC014950Beftekia Scaras-Grilled Patties (Php 210, US$ 4.36)
The patties had a distinct taste that differentiates it from a normal patty's. You can taste that it's not gummy or dry or has too many preservatives. It breaks easily and is definitely worth a try.

Ozy Go, Tiffy, Bong and Franywanny

Reviewed by Bong and Tiffy.
Photography by Fritz and Tiffy.

01 March 2009

Pizza for Brunch


There is a certain group of people who firmly believe that certain things aren't meant to be eaten until past a certain time of day, like no alcohol before noon, no ice cream for breakfast, or no cereal during dinner. Fortunately (in my opinion) for me, I grew up in a household that did not fall prey to these stereotypes, and I grew up comfortable eating fried egg and tinapa for dinner, cereal very late at night, and pizza and ice cream for breakfast.

I love pizza, and for me nothing comes close to Gourmet Garden or the Garden Special from Yellowcab. But lately there have been fewer and fewer toppings, and in accordance to my new year's resolution to eat better, I have shied away from most pizzas because they are far too oily.

Which brings me to today, and I would like to share what I do to get my healthy pizza fix. It is so much easier to buy pizza crust from the store, but if anyone is interested in making their own pizza dough, Chef Todd English has a great recipe for pizza dough here. The rest of the ingredients are:

  1. Zuchinni - cut into thin rounds or roughly half a centimeter (because they taste best when they are cooked all the way through)
  2. Eggplant - cut into slightly thicker one centimeter
  3. Blanched Tomatoes - You drop tomatoes (not fast! you don't want to get splattered!) into hot boiling water for no more than maybe a minute, followed by a quick dunk in ice water. After this you peel off the skin, it is much easier to peel off the skin if you score the tops of the tomatoes (you cut an X on top so you have something to pull when you peel off the skin). I know this is technically not blanching as blanching usually takes only 15 seconds, but you want the tomato to get to a slightly mushy but still intact phase, because this is going to take the place of your tomato sauce. It will get messy. Do it in a bowl.
  4. Green Bell Pepper - cut these into crunchy rounds, and don't be afraid to include the seeds!
  5. Feta - one of the staples in our household, we use Lemnos feta most of the time because they have some great goat feta. You're gonna have to crush this with a fork so that it is easier to spread.
  6. Mozarella (Fresh Bocconcini) - Almost all commercial pizzas use long life mozarella blocks, which may be a better melting cheese but is not very good for you. Fresh mozarella, like Bocconcini has a shelf life of only a few weeks, and are balls of cheese in water. We get this from S&R in small clear plastic tubs (Mamma Lucia). You're gonna have to cut this up in pieces, doesn't matter what size.
  7. Olive oil - for general drizzling
  8. Basil - the perfect garnish
So first off, you want to waterproof the crust, as you can be sure that all the vegetables and the bocconcini is going to release a lot of water upon baking. So you drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil on the crusts and bake them until they begin to form a hard crust on the top. You take them out and begin to spread a thin layer of crushed feta first. Then you alternate the eggplant and zuchinni, and top it off with tomatoes and green bell pepper. Last will be the pieces of mozarella. Drizzle again with olive oil. Place in the oven at 350C until the cheese melts and the zuchinni and eggplant are cooked.

That sounds like pretty great breakfast to me.
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